Flashcards can be a great tool, but when it comes to note reading, they can cause a disassociation between the grand staff and the keyboard…that’s the last thing we want!
One way of combatting this is to have students not only tell you the name of the note, but also play the corresponding key. This is what we do with the 60 Second Challenges, and is also great for students who get confused between octaves (I have a lot of transfer students with this problem!).
These tiny piano flashcards are small enough to fit on top of the piano keys. I mounted them on foam board to make sure they don’t slip between keys.
To do this I printed the first page piano flashcards on sticky back paper, stuck it to the foam board, and then cut the cards apart with a craft knife. When you’re printing make sure you don’t check “fit to page” but leave it as “do not scale” or “actual size”.
There are also three black and white pages in the pdf file, if you prefer to print on coloured card and avoid printing in colour ink.
There are four colours of piano flashcards, blue, green, yellow and orange.
- Blue covers bass f to treble g
- Green covers bass c to treble c
- Yellow covers low g to high f
- Orange includes notes of up to two ledger lines
You can use whichever ones suit you, I made them different colours simply so they were easy to sort and find.
Each set of these piano flashcards is stored in a separate folder, along with a ‘Piano Puzzle Log’.
Students will not only use these in lessons, but will also be part of my games lending library, and students can take them home to practice. I think having a record of what times other students got will create a good sense of competition within my studio.
How do you make sure that your students relate the grand staff directly to the keys?
Do you have any creative ways of making this connection? I’d love to hear all about them!